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|"The White Elephant Gift Exchange"|
|Season 6, Episode 9|
|Premiere date:|| December 4, 2014 (US)
September 7, 2015 (UK)
"The Real Thomas"
"Merry Christmas Mordecai"
"The White Elephant Gift Exchange" is the ninth episode in Season 6 (and the one-hundred and sixty-second episode overall) of Regular Show. It first aired on December 4, 2014.
The guys want to take revenge on Muscle Man for his terrible gifts.
The episode begins on a cold winter's day at the park, where all the trees have lost their leaves. The park staff holds a meeting. Benson announces that the annual White Elephant Gift Exchange is tonight. Everybody but Muscle Man will find the occasion not a good choice. Once the meeting is done, Muscle Man ecstatically leaves so he can get the presents for them.
Later, at Benson's office, the other park workers begin to complain to Benson, who suggest that they cancel this year's White Elephant Gift Exchange. The reason why they want the W.E. ("White Elephant" abbreviation) to get cancelled this year is because over the past years, Muscle Man is always giving his fellow park workers really bad gifts. Benson comes up with an elaborate plan to get revenge on Muscle Man.
The W.E always goes in this tradition: each park member has to pull a random number from a hat, and whosoever number gets called on, they get to choose a gift from the tree to open. Benson then decides to rig the ballot by making all the number slips have the same number (7 in this case), and pretend that their number gets called. He also decides that they should get gifts that Muscle Man would never steal. After a couple guesses (Skips: deodorant, Pops: a new tie, and HFG: a Huggstable doll), Benson says the correct answer is actually salad accessories, which Muscle Man heavily despises because of his hatred for anything salad-related. If they keep it up, everybody would have salad accessories, and Muscle Man would be the only one without a gift, leaving him no choice but to open up the last present. Unfortunately, Benson hasn't gone that far into the plan yet, but luckily for him, that's where the park workers come in. He says that he already bought the salad stuff, and orders the others to go shopping to look for the worst possible thing they could find.
At a naughty 9¢ store, Pops and Hi-Give Ghost find a can of expired tuna, and HFG suggest they buy it. When Pops questions if it's too much, HFG reminds Pops about his (Pops') disaster last year. In the flashback from last year's W.E., Pops receives a ship in a bottle, which he instantly loves. Sadly, Muscle Man is next and decides to steal Pops' present (because part of the W.E. allows you to steal another person's gift), which upsets him immediately. Muscle Man tells Pops not to worry, as he gives Pops a present shaped like a bottle. Pops opens it, and it turns out to be a bottle full of black liquid. Though fascinated, he becomes grossed out by its smell. Muscle Man then reveals that it's 20 year old ranch dressing, but he put in a bottle and gave it to Pops as a brand new "paperweight". This revelation makes Pops cry in despair. Back in the present, Pops completely changes his thoughts and demandingly asks a clerk for the most expired food product they have.
At a camping store, Mordecai and Rigby gaze upon an object (which isn't shown) and suggest that they get it. When Mordecai questions if this is too harsh, Rigby then reminds him of ta previous year. In another flashback, Mordecai and Rigby seen yelling in agony while wearing red sweaters that were given by Muscle Man. Muscle Man reveals that he put itching powder in their sweaters, which is shown by their incessant scratching while Mordecai cries that it got in his eyes. When the flashback is over, Mordecai changes his mind, claiming it's not harsh at all. The duo proceed to buy the object.
In an alley, Skips and Benson are seen talking with a stranger in the dark, who requests that he wants $500 for their favor. Skips questions Benson if he wants to go through with this. This transitions through one last flashback to another previous W.E., where it is revealed that Benson's gift is a pair of comfortable white gloves. After making numerous remarks about the gloves being comfortable, Muscle Man reveals that he made the gloves out of his old underwear. Upon closer inspection, they are indeed made of underwear, making Benson shout in despair. Once the flashback is done, Benson remarks that he didn't want to retire early and gives the stranger the $500 he wants.
Later that day, the W.E. is about to start and the three groups are all deciding which of the three gifts is the most worst. Benson says that all of them are the worst, and commandingly tells the others to wrap it up while laughing like a crazed maniac. With the wrapping all done, the present looks like an oddly shaped object, and the others join Benson by laughing evilly with him. After a few seconds of laughing, they hear a knock on the door. The others stop their laughing and Benson goes to answer the door, where he finds Muscle Man carrying a large rectangular gift. The W.E. starts, and every park member pulls out a number from the hat. From everybody's view, they all have the number 7. Benson then starts calling out the numbers, and they all pretend not to pick the false gift, and grab the other gifts, and they're revealed to be salad accessories, which means that the plan is going as accordingly. With every worker except Rigby and Muscle Man with a different salad accessory, it's now narrowed to the last two gifts. Benson calls out Rigby's number and he goes to open up Muscle Man's gift, which is revealed to be a new flat-screen TV. This shocks the others, and Muscle Man then gives a heart-warming speech that even though he has pranked the others with his horrible gifts, he got them this TV in hopes that it would bring them closer to each other, because he thinks his whole crew is like his family. These words from the prankster makes everyone feel regretful about their actions.
Muscle Man then proceeds to open up the false gift, and the instant he touches it, the other park workers get warped to a white temple in the unknown (like the Regular Show title card) where the find the White Elephant, a giant elephant who represents the spirit of the W.E. Gift Exchange. The White Elephant tells them they get to spent eternity at his temple, but are forbidden to open up the gifts shown. Benson apologizes for their actions today, but asks why they're not allowed to get back at him. The White Elephant claims that the W.E Gift Exchange is actually about giving gifts you don't like, not receiving gifts you like, making it fun. This makes the guys realise that all the prank gifts he offered were just his way of having a fun time. Mordecai then requests that they get sent back so they can stop Muscle Man from opening their prank gift since Muscle Man gave them a new TV. Reluctant at first, the White Elephant offers the workers a gift he holds on his lap, but they deny the offer, saying that they're OK. At that moment, the White Elephant zaps them back to the house.
Muscle Man proceeds to open the gift, but before he can do so, Benson stops him. When Benson tries to explain the situation, Rigby interrupts, and says that there's no TV inside the box, instead, it's actually full of old Chinese food. Muscle Man says that he made that heartfelt speech in order to trick the guys, having pranked them once again. Everybody stays quiet, and when Muscle Man asks Benson what he was going to say, Benson, at the urging of everybody else, relinquishes his change of heart and tells him to enjoy opening his gift.
Note: This next scene will appear in slow-motion and the song A Holly Jolly Christmas by Burl Ives will be playing in the background.
Muscle Man opens up his gift, and the first thing that bursts out is a can of expired clam chowder, which is what HFG and Pops got at the 99¢ store. It pops open at it splatters clam chowder all over a shocked Muscle Man, while the others laugh at his misfortune. After slipping, Muscle Man rips off some more wrapping paper from his gift, and the second thing to come out is a baseball pitching machine, which is what Mordecai and Rigby got at the camping store. The machine shoots out Pops' "paperweight", Mordecai and Rigby's itching powder covered sweaters, Benson's underwear gloves, and many baseballs at Muscle Man. The others continue to laugh at his pain while Rigby records the whole thing with a video camera. After getting up on his feet, Muscle Man rips off some more of the wrapping paper, and the last thing to come out is an elf, which is the person Skips and Benson gave the $500 to. He jumps out of the present, and begins to mercilessly beat up Muscle Man while the others enjoy themselves by drinking grape soda.
The camera begins to zoom out, which reveals the house, and when it zoom out even further, it's revealed that all the action shown actually took place as a hologram in a snow globe, which was in the present the White Elephant had offered to the park workers earlier. He closes the box, winks at the audience, and walks away, ending the episode.
- Mordecai and Rigby are the only ones addressed by name by the White Elephant
- Despite being his best friend, High Five Ghost never knew Muscle Man can't stand anything related to salad.
- Skips and Fives are the only ones who weren't revealed in flashbacks to receive prank gifts from Muscle Man.
- The White Elephant broke the fourth wall by winking to the audience at the end of the episode.
- The White Elephant's and his temple appearance bears a resemblance to Abraham Lincoln's statue and the Lincoln Memorial. And also he's sightly similar to the elephant-headed Hindu god Ganesha.
Cultural References Edit
- The song heard when the workers exact revenge on Muscle Man is "Have A Holly Jolly Christmas" by folk singer Burl Ives. A different arrangement (also sung by Ives but with a faster pace) was heard in the 1964 television special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
- The White Elephant has a gift box attached to his crotch area. This is a reference to the well-known Saturday Night Live digital short Dick In A Box.
- During a flashback, after Muscle Man steal Pops' gift, he claims Pops gets to open the last gift, when there were many gifts which weren't opened yet.
- After everybody but Muscle Man and Rigby receive their presents, Benson claims that there are only two gifts left, but there are two more gifts sitting next to tree, meaning that there were actually four presents remaining. They may have been for family members though.
- Pops somehow manages to buy the expired clam chowder with his lollipops, despite his unsuccessful attempts to do so in previous episodes. It might be possible that HFG paid for it.